Auckland – it’s hard to imagine a more geographically diverse region. Whether it’s the rugged black-sand surf beaches of the west coast, dense native forest of the Hunua Ranges, rolling green pastures of the south or the city’s high-rise centre – there’s something different to see and do all within an hour's or so drive.
Auckland Council’s Head of Parks Services Mark Bowater says Auckland’s parks reflect the region’s unique and diverse landscapes.
“Our parks represent the iconic landscapes of Auckland and play an important part in the identity of the region. This diversity is also reflected through the many ecosystems and native species that call our parks home, as well as the different ways in which people experience and use our parks.”
Wherever you are in Auckland, these park walks are perfect for a staycation adventure this summer.
Take in the stunning, panoramic views of the Hauraki Gulf and its offshore islands by walking the Coastal Track at Long Bay Regional Park. This multi-use track takes you to the northern end of the park through coastal bush and secluded bays (be aware that you may encounter the occasional nude bather at Pōhutukawa Bay).
Explore Whakanewha Regional Park on the Park Walk track. This looped walk takes in many highlights, including mature coastal forest, the scenic Cascades Stream and stunning views over the park and back to mainland Auckland.
From the main carpark take the Nïkau Track to join the Tarata Track. Turn right off this track and enjoy the walk to the small but beautiful waterfalls. From here, return back along the Tarata Track with its spectacular views over the park and the Hauraki Gulf to the mainland, and return to the carpark via the Kōwhai Track.
Hike up Pigeon Mountain (Ōhuiarangi), an old pā site in Half Moon Bay. From the top of this volcanic cone, you’ll see the Waitematā Harbour, Tāmaki River and Manukau Harbour.
If you’re after more of a challenge, wind your way up Mt Eden (Maungawhau) – Auckland’s highest volcano. From the summit, you’ll enjoy spectacular 360-degree views of the city and its harbours.
Stroll through Albert Park – one of Auckland’s most important parks located in the heart of the city. At one corner of the park you’ll find the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki and gardens, and on the other side is the original park-keeper's cottage, which is now a museum of memorabilia. The park also features a range of statues and memorials, flowerbeds, a Victorian fountain and large trees perfect for escaping the summer heat.
Help protect our kauri
Kauri dieback is an incurable disease threatening kauri trees. You can help protect our kauri by three easy steps:
- Scrub – clean all soil off your footwear and other gear, every time you enter or leave a forest/area with native trees.
- Spray – your footwear and gear at every cleaning station. Kauri dieback can be spread by just a pinhead of soil.
- Stay – on the designated open tracks.